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  The Rules

Series Producer Simon Shaw explains the role the rules played in the experiment.


QWith all the comforts of the modern world just outside their door, did the Bowlers ever break the rules?

ShawThere were actually very few infractions, but Joyce, the mother, went out and bought shampoo on one occasion, and Kathryn, the teenage daughter, used a telephone box to call her friends.

QCould the Bowlers have done anything that would disqualify them from the experiment?

ShawThere were no penalties. The purpose was to understand how people lived at a completely different time in history, not to put on a game show. What made the project interesting was when they did break the rules, when they did say, "I can't bear this anymore," when Joe, the young boy, said "I can't eat this food."

QInfractions were all part of the experiment?

ShawYes, and you have to understand these were challenging conditions. Kathryn, for example, made her telephone call after weeks of living a completely up-ended lifestyle. Everything she ate, all the clothes she wore, everything was completely changed. She was just expressing how she felt being straight-jacketed into the much more restrictive culture of the past.



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